In 2016, Teri Fahrendorf arrived at the milestone of being a beer professional for exactly half of her entire life. She was an award-winning brewmaster for 19 years, then a gypsy brewer, then a beer store clerk, then a malt & hops sales rep, and now circling back Teri is brewing again.
Currently Teri is overjoyed to be the first Malt Innovation Center Manager for Great Western Malting Company in Vancouver, Washington, where she brews on a tricked-out PLC-controlled dual-kettle one-barrel brewery. In 2016 the Malt Innovation Center will expand to include a pilot malting unit, a pilot roaster, and eventually if Federal and State law allows it, a pilot distillery in 2017.
Teri's beer career includes surviving her first brewery employer's business shutdown, and surviving third degree burns and skin grafts to 11 percent of her body. (She'll show you her scars if you ask. Read about it at www.terifahrendorf.com/burn-article.htm.) She worked on six start-up breweries for her various employers, including building four brewpub breweries from scratch, one R&D brewery from scratch, and upgrading one brewpub brewery. In total she has worked for four brewing companies if you include her unpaid internship. Over her original 19 years as a Brewmaster, Teri hired and/or trained 44 brewers, many of whom went on to great acclaim and fame. [Say hello to my peeps Jamie Floyd and Shaun O'Sullivan. If we ever work together again, I'll be working for THEM! ;-) ] Her highlight as a regional brewmaster for Steelhead Brewery in Eugene, where she spent 17 of those 19 years, included supervising 11 brewers at 5 brewpub breweries in 2 states at once.
With the good fortune to be in the right place at the right time (except for that pesky burn accident), Teri has been able to surf the wave of the craft beer revolution since she first went pro in 1988. She has enjoyed many "Firsts" in her career including first woman craft brewmaster west of the Rockies, first in California, first in Oregon; first woman craft brewmaster who wasn't an owner and was hired for the job; first Oregon Brewers Guild Treasurer, first woman Oregon Brewers Guild board member; first woman Class President at the Siebel Institute of Brewing Technology, and probably other firsts that she can't remember right now.
And since apparently people want to know... to her knowledge she was the third woman craft brewmaster in the USA in 1988. (The first two were, in order: Mellie Pullman in 1986, and Carol Stoudt in 1987.)
During her epic 2007 journey as a gypsy brewer, which she blogged live at www.roadbrewer.com, Teri founded the Pink Boots Society: an international education-focused 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization supporting women beer professionals with scholarships and networking opportunities. Pink Boots Society currently serves over 2,500 members in about 30 countries with about 50 chapters worldwide. It is growing exponentially and is barely contained and managed by our hardworking hired gun, Executive Director Emily Engdahl and her contingent of volunteer members. (Emily always needs help, so if you have an idea, a skill and time, please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Pink Boots Society's big annual fundraising event is held each year on the Saturday closest to March 8th, so show your support by joining a Big Boots Brew or a Little Boots Brew event. These two professional and homebrew events are held in honor of International Women's [Collaboration Brew] Day (March 8th). Learn more or register your brew team at www.iwcbd.org, and see the map of brewing and pledging participants. You can also support this annual PBS scholarship fundraising campaign by purchasing any brewery's version of Pink Boots beer in late March through June. For more info on the Society visit www.pinkbootssociety.org.
And you can stop trying
to do the math in your head now!